On Thursday, President-elect Barack Obama called for doubling production of alternative energy in the United States over the next three years as part of his "American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan." In a speech officially rolling out the plan, he also set a goal of retrofitting more than 75 percent of federal buildings and 2 million homes to make them more energy-efficient.
"In the process, we will put Americans to work in new jobs that pay well and can't be outsourced -- jobs building solar panels and wind turbines; constructing fuel-efficient cars and buildings; and developing the new energy technologies that will lead to even more jobs, more savings, and a cleaner, safer planet in the bargain," he said. (He did not say, nor is it entirely clear, why jobs manufacturing turbines and cars can't be outsourced.)
Obama also pledged to make major investments in infrastructure, including not just road and bridge repairs but construction of a new, national "smart grid" that "will save us money, protect our power sources from blackout or attack, and deliver clean, alternative forms of energy to every corner of our nation."